How long does it take you to type?

Friday, May 23, 2008 | 10:28 AM

We all know that typing on mobile phones can sometimes be a headache -- especially if the phone in question has a small 9-key keypad. On those kinds of devices, we estimate that it takes an average of 40 seconds and 41 key presses to enter a query. When it comes to key presses, that's more than double what it takes on other phones!

In an effort to help our mobile users, we studied the effect of incorporating a feature like Google Suggest on mobile phones with 9-key keypads. We found that these users respond favorably to query suggestions: Users who were shown suggestions while typing their query rated their overall enjoyment higher and perceived workload lower than users who were not shown suggestions. Users who were shown suggestions also reduced their overall key presses by half. Surprisingly, the time to enter a query for these users was not significantly less than the average time needed to enter queries for users who were not shown any suggestions.

You can find a more complete discussion of our results and findings in the PDF version of "Query Suggestions for Mobile Search: Understanding Usage Patterns." It was presented at the CHI-2008 conference last month. Also, we've incorporated Google Suggest on Google's iPhone interface, so try it out if you haven't already!

Early Android Developer Challenge results

Tuesday, May 13, 2008 | 5:35 AM

The Android team has announced the selection of the top 50 applications of the Android Developer Challenge. Each of the top 50 apps will receive $25,000 and is eligible to receive further recognition via ten $275,000 awards and ten $100,000 awards in the final judging round. A total of 1,788 total submissions were received.

While the team is working on a more detailed description of the top 50 apps, you can read a general summary of the apps on the Android Developer blog.

Fast and easy access to Google on Sprint phones

Wednesday, May 7, 2008 | 10:40 AM

Today we're happy to announce that we'll be working with Sprint to provide quick and easy access to Google search, Google Maps for mobile, YouTube, and other Google mobile services on Sprint's new generation of consumer devices. Google will also be the default search provider on the Sprint portal, and Sprint will enable users to take advantage of location data for Google search and Google Maps for mobile on certain devices.

On some of Sprint's upcoming devices, you'll be able to get to the web with even greater ease with one-click access to Google search from your phone's home screen. In the spirit of openness, you'll be able to add, change, or delete your preferred search provider at any time. Also, having more location data available for Google Search and Maps will make it easier and faster for you to get directions and search results for nearby restaurants, shops, services, and more.

We're always looking for ways to work with carriers, device manufacturers, software providers, and others to help you get the information and content you need, whenever and wherever you need it. To learn more about how Sprint and Google will be working together, take a look at our press release.

We also announced today our investment alongside Sprint, Comcast, Intel, Time Warner, and others in a new wireless broadband company, Clearwire. The company is developing a nationwide mobile WiMax network that will adopt open standards and policies that can ultimately make your mobile broadband experience more internet like. Read more on the Official Google Blog.

Google on the iPhone makes News, goes around the world and to your Apps domain

Thursday, May 1, 2008 | 10:25 AM

Google fürs iPhone jetzt auch in deutsch! Et en français .. en in het Nederlands and in many more languages. When we launched our new Google interface for the iPhone at Macworld in San Francisco last January, a number of you approached us at our booth and asked when you could use our new interface in your home country. (Yes, San Francisco IS a very cosmopolitan city.) I am happy to say: the time has come. Today we're launching our new integrated Google experience for the iPhone and iPod Touch in 33 new markets and 16 new languages, from Argentina to New Zealand, from Swedish to Chinese.

Google on the iPhone is a great way to access your most used Google services. Some of its benefits include

  • Fast and fluid search with one-tap access to News, image, local, or web results and search query suggestions when you start typing
  • Automatic delivery of Gmail messages (no need to refresh your browser!), and auto-completion of email addresses when typing
  • A combined month-and-current-day view of your always-in-sync Google Calendar, and the ability to share pictures with friends and family using Picasa Web Albums
Today we're also launching a special Google News edition for the iPhone. Browse the front page or search for results straight from the home page. Enjoy the full catalog of Google News sources and even watch associated YouTube content.

To try out the new Google interface, just point your iPhone or iPod Touch web browser to

Furthermore, if you use Google Apps - now is the time to use your domain name on the iPhone as well. Just bookmark for fast one-click access to Google. Please make sure to replace YOURDOMAIN with your actual domain name.